Sharing the Real Presence
This newsletter features an article from the Missionaries on healing from stones being cast and shattering ones faith. We invite you come caroling with us next week or to get involved in some of our other upcoming events. If you would like to give a christmas gift to the missionaries consider something from our needed items list at the bottom of our newsletter. Please continue keeping us and those we are ministering to in your prayers. We hope these newsletters can encourage you and our readers to grow in faith and in zeal for the work of the salvation of souls that is so needed in our church.
In this newsletter
Healing from Cast Stones
Healing from cast stones by Griffin Rain
“Let the one among you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.”
As I reflect on John chapter 8, the woman caught in adultery, every person goes away without casting a stone. In today's time I don't think that many of us Christians and Catholics would walk away without casting stones. In our ministry on the streets we encounter many who are angry with the church and people who are close to them that are Christians because they have struggled with sin and have felt that stones have been cast at them. These are not physical stones but our condemnation has been passed on them and they have been spiritually stoned.
I have seen the dangerous belief that has been introduced by some Christian denominations of “once saved always saved” make its way into the minds of many who practice the Catholic faith under the guise of as long as I'm a good person I will be saved. Let us take to heart the words of Christ in Luke 18:19. Why do you call me good? No one is good but God Alone. So let us not forget that we too are sinners in need of God's mercy lest we allow our pride to get in the way and we cast stones at those whose faith is fragile.
Many of those who we've met and who have fallen away from the faith hold values that are contrary to Catholic teaching. I know that before my conversion I too held beliefs that were contrary to Catholic teaching. It was an encounter with God's love and mercy that started my coming back to the church and eventually I started fully accepting the church's teachings. We often get so caught up in this mode of defending values that we forget we're dealing with a person who is often confused, hurt, broken and needs to be loved as Christ loves them before they can give up their sinful life. Each of us can probably look to a moment in our life where we were struggling with some serious sins or doubt with our faith. If we had not been first encouraged and forgiven by other Christians, Christ himself and the priest we may not be faithful Catholics now, but one of those who feel separated and stoned by followers of Christ.
Recently while we were evangelizing in front of a grocery store, I met a lady who was working for the Salvation Army as a bell ringer. She grew up in the Catholic faith and since having a few bad experiences where people were very rude to her and disrespectful. She has now left the church and been hopping around to various protestant churches. She shared that when praying the “Our Father”, she is unable to say the words, forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us. She has been unable to forgive those in the church who have hurt her. I invited her to pray with the abuse, neglect and pain that Jesus went through in his passion and still he said Father, forgive them, they know not what they do. Those who are in the church and treating people with disrespect are crucifying Christ again and they may not realize it. When a person falls away from the faith because of our actions there is a spiritual death that occurs. We in fact kill Christ who desires to live in that person. She also said that she will not give anything to the church because of what happened. I told her that she doesn't have to give any money to the church, just give her sins to Christ at the confessional. She said that she has many sins and didn’t believe they could be forgiven. After encouraging her that Jesus could forgive her sins she resolved to go to confession later that night when she got off work. She knew her own sins and her need for forgiveness and I pray that she receives Christ forgiveness and shows great love.
So I tell you, her many sins have been forgiven; hence, she has shown great love. But the one to whom little is forgiven, loves little.” Luke 7:47
This made me ponder how much greater it is to give out of love instead of obligation. One who is loved and forgiven and healed by Christ gives more than one who is merely obliged. Each of us Catholics are obliged to love; some were breaking this obligation and so she felt burned to the point that she would no longer keep her obligation. We Catholics do many things out of obligation, but I encourage you to avail yourself to God’s love in the sacrament of reconciliation and allow yourself to be loved, forgiven and as Jesus says to the sinful woman in the gospel so he says to you, your sins have been forgiven… go in peace. We must be like the sinful woman who shows great love because her great sins are forgiven. We must realize that we have been forgiven a debt that would be impossible for us to pay back without Christ’s redemption. If we think we can do it on our own we may be stuck in an obligation mentality of doing the bare minimum needed to be a Catholic or worse, we may be casting the first stone. Let us show great love because we have been forgiven much!
Advent/Christmas Caroling - Join us the week of December 18th through 23rd for caroling during our normal apostolate time.
The days we will be caroling will be
Monday at St Anthony's 1:00 pm to 5:20 pm
Tuesday at St Casimir's 1:00pm to about 5:00 pm
Wednesday at Mother of Good Counsel 1:00 pm to 5:05 pm
Thursday at St Anthony's 1:00 pm to around 4:00 pm
Friday (if there is interest flexible time and location)
Saturday at Ss Peter and Paul around noon to around 4:00 pm
Please let us know if you can make specific days and times by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org or texting us at (414)235-7307.
Missionary Associates - Join us this Thursday December 21st for this months meeting of the Missionary Associates. This is for people who volunteer with the missionaries or are interested in volunteering/supporting our work. We hope that this continues building up the community around the missionaries, get to know others and energize more people to start working for the salvation of souls here in Milwaukee. This occurs on the 3rd Thursday of every month. It Occurs at St Anthony Catholic Church at 1711 S 9th St. Milwaukee, WI 53204.
The schedule for the event is as follows:
Evening Prayer in the Church 5:30pm - 5:45 pm
Short talk by one of the missionaries 5:50 pm - 6:10 pm
Dinner and socializing 6:15 pm onward
Many people have been asking what kind of items that we are in need of to support us in a specific way. We will now have at the bottom of our monthly newsletter some items that we are in need of as well as some specific things we will need funding for.
Copy Paper, Legal and Letter
thick glossy paper for inkjet printer for vocations trifolds (Click here)
Confession A little Book for the Reluctant 100 copies from TAN Books
Metal Baking sheets
Heavy wool socks
spanish bibles and catechisms
Seek Young Adult Catholic Conference - We will have a table set up to promote vocations to MRP ($2700)
About the Missionaries of the Real Presence
The Missionaries of the Real Presence are a group of lay men who live in common at St Anthony Parish in Milwaukee, Wisconsin as they discern a charism for a new religious community to be Contemplative Missionaries for Urban Evangelization. We are dedicated to prayer through daily Eucharistic Adoration and chanted Liturgy of the Hours in the church open to the public and evangelization to the neighborhoods surrounding the parishes we serve in.
Support the Mission, Join the Mission
If you appreciate the work we are doing, consider supporting our mission financially Here.
Volunteer with us with our street ministry and house visits Here
If reading about some of our stories inspires you, come and see what life as a missionary is like and visit us for a day or longer for prayer and ministry as you discern Here.
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